An open letter to my future mother-in-law.
I do not know you yet. I don’t know your name. I don’t know your hair color. I don’t know your son.
What I do know is that you must have done a particularly amazing job raising your son. I have high standards, as I am sure he does as well. Raising such an awesome man of God took years and years of hard work. I know that too. So right now I want to thank you. Before I know him, before I know you, before I know anything. I want to thank you.
Thank you for raising the man that I am going to marry. It feels surreal to write that even now. I can only imagine the many hours that you have spent helping with homework, doing his laundry, and making him meals. I am so thankful for the years you have invested into his life.
But after those years of bringing him up and shaping him into who he is today, how is any mother supposed to let go? I believe that simple question is where most of the traditional mother-in-law vs. daughter-in-law problems begin. From what I have seen in my short time on Earth, there is constant tension in this relationship. So before I even know who you are, I have a proposal.
You be Naomi. I’ll be Ruth.
The book of Ruth has always been one of my favorite books of the Bible. I have always loved the relationship between Naomi and Ruth. I believe that it is a beautiful example of God’s plan for the relationship that we have. God did not create anything imperfect. From the very beginning, He commanded that we love one another. God did not create this relationship to be one of bitterness, hate, and fear. He created it to be one of love and respect.
I will very likely be taking on the same last name that you yourself hold. There is a reason that I change my last name to my husbands. I become a part of your family. And while God said that a man must leave his parents and cleave to his wife, I have left my family to become a part of yours. I humbly ask that you treat me as your own flesh and blood. Take me in as you would your own daughter. And if you have no daughter, let me be the one you never had. Let me be your Ruth.
I ask you to be my Naomi. Give me wisdom and no criticism in times of turmoil. Pick me back up when I feel defeated. Show me grace and mercy in times of failure.
I will be your Ruth. You will always be welcome in my home. My children will know and love you. My husband and I will respect your wisdom and input. You will find yourself valued beyond compare when in my presence.
I want you to know that at the age of seventeen, I am already praying for you. I pray that we will have a bond that is not stepped upon by the evils of this world but shows the love and light of Christ. What better way to show the world God’s immense love for us, than taking one of the most difficult things in this earth and making it full of joy, peace, and goodness. What a beautiful testimony of God’s faithfulness it will be.
I am so excited to meet you.